Actress Ana de Armas took everyone by surprise as she looked every-inch as Hollywood icon Marilyn Monroe in the latest 'Blonde' trailer.
Netflix has debuted the first evocative footage from Andrew Dominik's 'Blonde'. The movie, based on the bestselling novel by Joyce Carol Oates, is notable for its NC-17 rating, reports 'Variety'.
The supporting cast includes Bobby Cannavale, Adrien Brody, Julianne Nicholson, Xavier Samuel and Evan Williams.
The official 'Blonde' synopsis from Netflix reads: "(The film) boldly reimagines the life of one of Hollywood's most enduring icons, Marilyn Monroe. From her volatile childhood as Norma Jeane, through her rise to stardom and romantic entanglements, 'Blonde' blurs the lines of fact and fiction to explore the widening split between her public and private selves."
"Andrew's ambitions were very clear from the start -- to present a version of Marilyn Monroe's life through her lens," de Armas recently told Netflix Queue.
"He wanted the world to experience what it actually felt like to not only be Marilyn, but also Norma Jeane. I found that to be the most daring, unapologetic, and feminist take on her story that I had ever seen."
"We worked on this film for hours, every single day for almost a year," de Armas added.
"I read Joyce's novel, studied hundreds of photographs, videos, audio recordings, films -- anything I could get my hands on. Every scene is inspired by an existing photograph. We'd pore over every detail in the photo and debate what was happening in it."
"The first question was always, 'What was Norma Jeane feeling here?' We wanted to tell the human side of her story. Fame is what made Marilyn the most visible person in the world, but it also made Norma the most invisible."
'Blonde' releases globally on Netflix September 23.
Germany recorded more than 1,00,000 new Covid-19 infections within one day for the first time since April, media reported.
Germany's national seven-day rate per 100,000 inhabitants more than doubled during the last week to around 447, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases said on Tuesday. In March, the incidence peaked at around 1,700 as a result of the Omicron wave.
"A summer wave was to be expected," said Minister of Health Karl Lauterbach on Twitter. "Voluntary wearing of masks indoors and a fourth vaccination are the best antidotes."
Most Covid restrictions in Germany have been relaxed. It is one of the last countries in the European Union to drop restrictions for entering from an EU member state for the summer months, Xinhua news agency reported.
This comes at a time when the two more contagious Omicron subvariants BA.5 and BA.4 are on the rise. Within a week, the share of BA.5 in Germany doubled to 10 per cent, according to the RKI's latest weekly report.
"In all likelihood, these two sublines will spread more widely, so that there may also be an overall increase in the number of infections and a renewed increase in infection pressure on vulnerable groups of people as early as summer," the RKI warned.
Lauterbach is planning for a renewed Covid-19 vaccination campaign in preparation for "all eventualities" in the fall. The country is to spend 830 million euros (867.5 million U.S. dollars) in the procurement of a new COVID-19 vaccine that protects against different variants of the virus.
So far, at least 76 per cent of the German population has received basic immunisation. Around 60 per cent have also got at least one booster vaccination, according to official figures. (1 euro = 1.04 U.S. dollars)
Stress -- in the form of traumatic events, job strain, everyday stressors and discrimination -- accelerates the ageing of the immune system, potentially increasing a person's risk of cancer, cardiovascular disease and illness from infections such as Covid-19, according to a new study.
To calculate exposure to various forms of social stress, the researchers from the University of Southern California analysed responses from a national sample of 5,744 adults over the age of 50.
Their experiences with social stress, including stressful life events, chronic stress, everyday discrimination and lifetime discrimination were compared with blood samples analysed through flow cytometry, a lab technique that counts and classifies blood cells as they pass one-by-one in a narrow stream in front of a laser.
As expected, people with higher stress scores had older-seeming immune profiles, with lower percentages of fresh disease fighters and higher percentages of worn-out white blood cells.
The association between stressful life events and fewer ready to respond, or naive, T cells remained strong even after controlling for education, smoking, drinking, BMI and race or ethnicity, the team revealed in the paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
T-cells -- a critical component of immunity -- mature in a gland called the thymus, which sits just in front of and above the heart. As people age, the tissue in their thymus shrinks and is replaced by fatty tissue, resulting in reduced production of immune cells.
Past research suggests that this process is accelerated by lifestyle factors like poor diet and low exercise, which are both associated with social stress.
Improving diet and exercise behaviours in older adults may help offset the immune ageing associated with stress.
"In this study, after statistically controlling for poor diet and low exercise, the connection between stress and accelerated immune ageing wasn't as strong," said lead study author Eric Klopack, a postdoctoral scholar at the University.
"What this means is people who experience more stress tend to have poorer diet and exercise habits, partly explaining why they have more accelerated immune ageing," he added.
An Indian origin patient was among those who had a "miracle" cure using a cancer medication that is being tried out by a research centre here achieving an unprecedented healing rate when all 14 patients in the trial had their cancers disappear.
"It's a miracle", Nisha Varughese said about the immunotherapy drug's efficacy in curing her.
In the trial at the Memorial Sloan Kettering (MSK) Cancer Center in New York using dostarlimab, "rectal cancer disappeared after immunotherapy -- without the need for the standard treatments of radiation, surgery, or chemotherapy -- and cancer has not returned in any of the patients, who have been cancer-free for up to two years," the MSK said.
According to researchers, this was the first time that all the patients in a cancer trial were completely healed with medication and they did not have serious side effects.
The results of the trial were disclosed over the weekend in the New England Journal of Medicine and at a meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.
An editorial in the Journal called it "an early glimpse of a revolutionary treatment shift".
MSK explained that "immunotherapy harnesses the body's own immune system as an ally against cancer".
It said, "The Immune cells contain a safeguard called a checkpoint, to prevent them from attacking normal cells. Cancer cells can trip this safeguard and shut down immune cells, allowing a tumour to hide and grow."
Immunotherapy uses what is called a "checkpoint inhibitor" that frees immune cells to recognise and attack cancer cells.
Varughese recalled discovering she was completely cancer-free: "That day I didn't see the tumour. So, I was thinking, where is the tumour? Then, maybe I thought it's hiding somewhere inside. Doctor told me, there is no more tumour. It's a miracle."
Andrea Cercek, a cancer specialist who ran the trial, said, "The immunotherapy shrank the tumours much faster than I expected."
Luis Diaz, who was the other researcher running the trial and is a member of the White House National Cancer Advisory Board, said, "It's really exciting. I think this is a great step forward for patients."
Usually, rectal cancer is treated with chemotherapy, radiation and surgery,
But Cercek said, "The most exciting part of this is that every single one of our patients has only needed immunotherapy. We haven't radiated anybody, and we haven't put anybody through surgery."
She added, "They have preserved normal bowel function, bladder function, sexual function, fertility. Women have their uterus and ovaries."
But in the Journal editorial, a cancer expert, Hanna K. Sanoff from the University of North Carolina, cautioned, "Whether the results of this small study conducted at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center will be generalisable to a broader population of patients with rectal cancer is also not known."
"Despite these uncertainties," she added, "Cercek and colleagues and their patients who agreed to forgo standard treatment for a promising but unknown future with immunotherapy have provided what may be an early glimpse of a revolutionary treatment shift."
Superstar Kamal Haasan's much-awaited movie, 'Vikram', is all set to become a super-duper hit. The movie, which is slated to be released on June 3 in theatres around the world, has already notched up Rs 200 crore in sales of TV and OTT rights.
Kamal Haasan's 232nd film released to a select audience during the Cannes Film Festival and Umair Sandhu, a critic based out of the UAE, tweeted about it, saying, "It is an earnest and honest effort, a terrific action thriller, with several poignant moments and episodes that leave a stunning impact. If you are in the frame of mind to watch superior quality sensible cinema, go for It #KamalHaasan fans."
In the movie, Kamal Haasan plays the role of Arun Kumar, an agent working for RAW, India's external intelligence agency. He is at times brutal and shows no mercy to criminals.
Musically, too, the song 'Pathala Pathala', written and co-sung by Kamal Haasan and music composer Anirudh Ravichandran, has already become a big hit on YouTube.
Tamil superstar Vijay Sethupathi plays an antagonist in the movie and Malayalam star Fahad Fazil is also in the film in a major role. Another Tamil superstar, Suriya, makes a cameo appearance in the film, which is produced by Kamal Haasan's movie house Raj Kamal and R. Mahendran.
Other actors who play significant roles in the movie are Narain, Antony Verghese, Chemben Vinod, Gayathrie Shankar, Shanvi Srivastava, Shivani Narayanan, Arjun Das and Kalidas Jayaram.
Veteran actor Sam Neill, who is set to reprise his character of Dr. Alan Grant in the upcoming sci-fi adventure film 'Jurassic World Dominion', recently shared his experience of visiting India back in the 90s and how driving down the roads of the country still makes him anxious.
For him, "It was an overload time" in India, as he told the press about his experience shooting in the country and how it continues to bring a smile on his face. He came to India in the 90s to shoot Rudyard Kipling's 'The Jungle Book' (1994).
Recollecting his experience, he said that "It was beautiful, but it was too beautiful. It was noisy, but it was too noisy. It was colourful, but it was too colourful. All my senses were overloaded the whole time I was in the country."
With a hearty laugh he said further, "I still get anxious when I think of hurtling down Indian roads in one of those sort of 50s Morris taxis, dodging people carrying things, weaving around cars. I would have to close my eyes in cars, because every minute we seem to be close to death. But in India, it seemed completely normal."
Jurassic World Dominion is directed by Colin Trevorrow who wrote the screenplay with Emily Carmichael, and is based on a story by Trevorrow and his writing partner, Derek Connolly. It is set to drop in theatres on June 10.
On the occasion of the 139th birth anniversary of Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, the first look of the upcoming biopic titled 'Swatantra Veer Savarkar' was unveiled on Saturday. Randeep Hooda plays the title role in the film, directed by Mahesh Manjrekar.
Talking about the film, producer Sandeep Singh said: "At a time when films of Harshad Mehta, Vijay Mallya, and Lalit Modi are trending, I am more interested in telling the story of Veer Savarkar's life. He was the first dynamic hero of India and the only man who could have saved the Partition in 1947."
He added: "Through this film, I, not only as a filmmaker but most importantly as an Indian, want to tell the world the facts about Savarkar's struggle. He is the most misunderstood hero and it is high time that we understand him, and moreover celebrate this rebel."
Adding to what Sandeep had to say about the casting of Hooda, co-producer Anand Pandit pointed out: "Randeep has time and again showcased his skill set as an actor and moreover, shown that he can transform into the character he portrays. But in the case of Savarkar, there is an added dynamic because of his uncanny resemblance to the freedom fighter."
He added: "I am a lover of history and excited to have the cinematic privilege to bring to 70 mm the story of a leader whose story must be told."
Director Mahesh Manjrekar noted: "People may have different versions in their mind for Savarkar but as a filmmaker, I'm trying to match the same thought which Savarkar had. So, the character of Savarkar in the film will not be any different from what Savarkar was in real life. He was the iconic freedom fighter and we'll ensure that he's never forgotten ever by any Indian."
Hooda had this to say: "This is a salute to one of the tallest unsung heroes of India's struggle for freedom and self-actualisation. I hope I can live up to the challenge of filling such big shoes of a truly revolutionary and tell his real story which had been brushed under the carpet for so long."
The film is going on floors in August 2022.
European countries will be told to prepare a vaccination plan to tackle the spiralling monkeypox outbreak, as Denmark became the latest country to be struck down.
EU authorities are set to publish a risk assessment, which will advise all member states to draw up an inoculation strategy to control the spread of the tropical virus, Daily Mail reported.
No monkeypox-specific vaccine exists ? but smallpox jabs ? which were routinely offered to Brits until the virus was eradicated four decades ago, is 85 per cent effective, Daily Mail reported.
The strategy likely to be recommended is the same already deployed in Britain. Officials were attempting to contain the spread by vaccinating all close contacts of the 20 confirmed monkeypox cases, including NHS workers.
The strategy, called ring vaccination, involves jabbing and monitoring anyone around an infected person to form a buffer of immune people to limit the disease's spread.
It comes as experts warn nations could bring in travel restrictions to control the spread of the illness, if the World Health Organization (WHO) declares the outbreak an emergency.
But the vaccine, called Imvanex and made by Denmark-based drugmaker Bavarian Nordic, has not been authorised for use against monkeypox in Europe or the UK, Daily Mail reported.
The European Medicines Agency approved the jab for use against smallpox in 2013, while the US Food and Drug Administration greenlit the injection for both infections in 2019.
And there is no data available on how safe it is for immunocompromised people or youngsters ? the groups at highest risk from the outbreak.
It comes as WHO bosses had been informed of 92 confirmed cases by Saturday and 28 suspected infections, most of which have been detected in Europe.
But the true toll will be many times higher, with top scientists warning community transmission means some of the spread is inevitably going undetected, Daily Mail reported. A disproportionate number of cases are in gay and bisexual men.
Eating fruits and vegetables may help children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) reduce inattention issues, a new study has suggested.
Inattention is a hallmark of ADHD and creates trouble for children to focus, difficulty in remembering things and in regulating emotions.
The study showed that kids who consumed more fruits and vegetables showed less severe symptoms of inattention, said Irene Hatsu, Associate Professor of human nutrition at The Ohio State University in the US.
"Eating a healthy diet, including fruits and vegetables, maybe one way to reduce some of the symptoms of ADHD," Hatsu said, in the paper published online in the journal Nutritional Neuroscience.
The team asked parents of 134 kids with ADHD symptoms to complete a detailed questionnaire about the typical foods the children ate, including portion sizes, over a 90-day period.Researchers believe that ADHD is related to low levels of some neurotransmitters in the brain -- and vitamins and minerals play a key role as cofactors in helping the body make those important neurochemicals and in overall brain function, Hatsu said.
"Everyone tends to get irritated when they're hungry and kids with ADHD are no exception. If they're not getting enough food, it could make their symptoms worse," she said.
Also, the stress of parents who are upset about not being able to provide enough food for their children can create family tension that could lead to more symptoms for children with ADHD.
"What clinicians usually do when kids with ADHD start having more severe symptoms is increase the dose of their treatment medication, if they are on one, or put them on medication," Hatsu said.
"Our studies suggest that it is worthwhile to check the children's access to food as well as the quality of their diet to see if it may be contributing to their symptom severity."
Pooja Hegde, who made her Cannes Film Festival debut at the 'Top Gun: Maverick' premiere on Wednesday, was a sight to behold in an elaborate strapless ivory-hued feather gown that had an embellished bodice and a voluminous skirt. She paired this dazzling outfit with diamond danglers and a no-fuss ponytail.
The 'Ala Vaikunthapuram Loo' actress used the hashtag 'Crafted in India' when she posted pictures of her new look on Instagram, indicating that the look was created by an Indian designer.
She then expressed gratitude to Anurag Thakur for making it possible. She said, "I didn't come with a brand; instead, I came with brand India. As an Indian actor, I've come to celebrate Indian cinema."
Pooja Hedge talked about how walking the red carpet at Cannes is a dream in a video snippet.
At the 75th Cannes Film Festival, India is the 'Country of Honour,' led by Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Singh Thakur.
Pooja is among the 11 film personalities along with A.R. Rahman, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, R. Madhavan, Shekhar Kapoor, and Prasoon Joshi, who are members of India's official delegation to Cannes.
Deepika Padukone, who is part of the jury of this film festival, joined the Indian delegation for the inauguration of the Indian Pavilion on Wednesday, the second day of world cinema's most prestigious showcase.
The implementation of Ayushman Bharat - Health and Wellness Centres (AB-HWC) scheme is on track in most states with a clear roadmap for achieving targets set for December 2022, according to an assessment report of 18 states released on Tuesday.
According to findings of a third party assessment of the scheme in 18 states, released by Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya, the launch of AB-HWC has enabled translation of the vision of moving from selective to comprehensive primary health care package enunciated in the National Health Policy 2017.
It also said that there has been an improvement in equity in access, despite existing constraints such as infrastructure availability and status of peripheral health facilities.
"Client satisfaction with the services provided was much higher among those who received services from HWCs as compared to those who received services from non-HWCs across all the four parameters measured - treatment, medicines, diagnostics and cleanliness," the report said.
Appreciating the findings of the report, Mandaviya said: "AB-HWC was envisioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to provide affordable and accessible healthcare to the last mile. In this regard, third party evaluation is important for proper assessment of the functioning and implementation of the scheme."
He stated that the report will act as a guiding principle to plan better in the future.
Mandaviya said that the necessary steps will be taken to further strengthen the scheme. He highlighted that the Union government is coordinating with states to ensure last mile delivery through teleconsultation. "The government is committed to provide best healthcare to all," he said.
The assessment of AB-HWCs in 18 states has been done in two phases by non-governmental entities, GRAAM and JHPIEGO, as well as AIIMS, New Delhi from the government sector, for the year 2020-21.
The primary aim of this exercise was to assess the pace of rollout of AB-HWCs in different states and to identify specific challenges in their rollout. Given the early stage of implementation, the assessment focussed primarily on the inputs and processes that contribute to the functionality of HWC and reviewed any gains in short-term outputs including community use of the expanded range of services with a focus on chronic non-communicable diseases care.
The assessment was undertaken using a cross-sectional study design with a mixed-methods approach. The 18 states were selected to cover the spectrum of epidemiological transition levels as defined by the Global Burden of Disease India study with a higher focus on northeastern states.
The study covered a sample of 317 facilities across the 18 states with 117 PHCs, and UPHCs and 220 SHCs. A total of 1,002 users from upgraded and 1,015 users from non-upgraded facilities were interviewed. The assessment covered both types of comparisons -pre and post conversion of the HWCs; and HWCs and non-HWCs within the same district.